My battered office door slammed open. Vilnius stood in the doorway. "Lucy," he called in a surprisingly accurate Desi Arnaz voice, "I'm home!"
Gus, seated behind my desk, stood up abruptly. "He's not here," he informed the demon.
Vilnius' eyes smoldered. "What?"
"He's visiting another demon," Gus said. "He wanted me to let you know that he's decided to decline your offer."
"That stupid fuck," Vilnius growled. In a flash, he'd crossed the room, bodily hauled Gus from his feet and pinned him against the wall. "Where the fuck did that little prick run off to? Who is he seeing? Is it Kivra? Who?"
I'd been hiding under the desk with a knife and a small bowl containing all of the components of the spell except one--the blood of my target. I crept out, drew the knife, and slashed deep into the flesh of Vilnius' neck. Blood spurted, and I managed to catch some of it in the bowl.
Vilnius shouted in pain and rage. He dropped Gus and clapped his hand to his bleeding neck. He whirled, his other hand shooting out to catch his attacker. I ducked, dodged around the desk, and quickly drank the revolting contents of the bowl.
Vilnius charged me. I tossed the bowl aside and said, "Stop."
He stopped immediately.
His chest heaving with exertion and an unhealthy amount of anger, he looked down at his immobile feet and glared up at me. "You devious little bastard," he muttered.